Percent of kindergarten students who attended preschool, nursery school or Head Start is the percentage of students enrolled in kindergarten as of October 1 who regularly attended a Head Start program, nursery school, licensed day care center, or public preschool program during the previous school year or summer.
Early childhood development is the strongest determinant and predictor of health outcomes1. Eighty-five percent of a child's core brain development occurs in the first five years of life, which provides the foundation for future health, academic success, and social and emotional well-being2. Children who have educational experience before kindergarten are exposed to at an earlier age and therefore are introduced to experiences that stimulate brain development, communication skills, and intellectual and behavioral patterns that are used later in life in decision-making1.
1 California Newsreel, Nationality Minority Consortia, Joint Center Health Policy Institute. Unnatural Causes: Is Inequality Making Us Sick? http://www.unnaturalcauses.org/resources.php?topic_id=3
2 Children Now. The First Five Years Determine a Lifetime. Children's Early Years Are Absolutely Critical. http://www.childrennow.org/index.php/learn/early_learning_and_development/
This data is derived from the Connecticut Department of Education's Connecticut Education Data and Research (CEDAR) site (http://www.csde.state.ct.us/public/cedar/index.htm).